What's Going On In This Country?

September 18, 2017 Edition
BY: SANTIAGO VERDUGO

Mother Nature strikes again As Los Cabos was still cleaning up from Tropical Storm Lidia, people on the mainland were dealing with a huge earthquake. It had an 8.5 magnitude, and struck the country’s southern Pacific coast, with the state of Oaxaca feeling the brunt of the earthquake’s force. In the town of Juchitán, the governor estimated that half of the municipality’s 14,000 houses were damaged.

65 people are now reported dead across three states, and more than 250 people have been reported injured by the massive quake. It was Mexico’s largest earthquake in at least a century.

More than 1,000 schools sustained structural damage and close to 2 million people were left without power, although the majority of them have had power restored, according to the Federal Electricity Commission.

Starbucks celebrates 15 years The first Mexican Starbucks opened in front of Mexico City’s Angel of Independence monument in September 2002. After the recent opening of a store in Tlaxcala, the coffee mega-chain can now be found in every state in Mexico. 

Not only that, but it’s one of the most profitable chains in Mexico. It dominated the café market last year, taking home 39% of the profits in that industry, which translates to $582 million USD.

Despite facing some anti-US backlash after the election of Donald Trump, Starbucks is mostly loved here in Mexico. The company has been praised for its support of local coffee growers, and for the number of jobs it’s created; about 7,000 across the country.

Another one for the record books This time it’s for the largest bowl of guacamole ever made. Avocado growers from Jalisco organized the preparation of a giant batch of guacamole, which totaled three tons. Hmm…, did they also set a record for the largest amount of tortillas chips eaten in one day?

More than 600 student chefs from 13 schools and 400 residents prepared the guacamole feast, with thousands of people on hand to watch. It took a massive amount of ingredients to make such a large batch of guac, including: 25,200 avocados; 3,500 tomatoes, 3,000 limes, 750 onions and almost 200 pounds of cilantro.

That’s not good The results from Mexico’s 2017 national survey aren’t very good for the governors of Mexico.

76% of people surveyed answered “no” when responding to the question, “If the governor of your state was your neighbor and you had to go away for a few days, would you trust him/her with your keys?” Baja North’s own governor, Francisco Vega was among the worst ranked.

The survey also found that almost 70% of people believed their governor was not in control of their state, while half the respondents said that they wouldn’t recommend living in their state because of a poor economy, few opportunities and high levels of insecurity.

That last part doesn’t seem to apply to Baja Sur, though, as it was ranked as of the states that people would most recommend to live in. Sure, we’re a glamour puss.

Illegal farms raided Yeah, they were growing the green stuff, but it’s not what you’re thinking. 1,100 state and federal agents made raids on farms that were illegally growing avocados, not pot. Yeah, that’s right, avocados are so valuable right now that people are starting covert operations to produce more of them.

What made these avocado farms illegal was the fact that they were located on protected land. The farms covered more than 600 acres of what was once forest land. Authorities seized the land cut down close to 93,000 avocado trees. Sob!

Agents also dismantled electrical and water infrastructure, both in operation without the necessary permits, and seized farm vehicles and equipment. They did this to protect the environment from losing more trees to avocado orchards.

Doggies from heaven Well, although some people think all dogs come from heaven, but recently 30 trained sniffers came from the United States. They are trained to sniff out cash, drugs, and guns. The dogs and their American trained handlers were spread around the country, but our state didn’t get any. Cats rule!

Indian givers! Mexico sent 30 Red Cross aid workers to Houston to help the hurricane Harvey cleanup, but after its own devastating earthquake and hurricane Katia, they have recalled them to work in Mexico. How about the US sends some helpful hands to Mexico now? We owe them, they were very generous with their help and concern.